Taliep Pietersen's daughter shares her emotional journey since her dad's death

The daughter of the late and legendary South African musician Taliep Petersen says while she was a daddy's girl, she does not plan on filling her father's shoes.

Her father, one of South Africa's best known theatre personalities , was shot dead at his home on 16 December 2006. His wife Najwa was convicted of his murder in 2008 and is still serving her sentence.

Fatiema is now embarking on her own musical journey.

Having suffered from selective mutism due to hyper post traumatic stress disorder, Fatiema started speaking at 13 years old. She soon discovered her singing voice when she performed in a grade 7 school play - and her father's words afterward meant so much to her.

Towards the end of my song, I hit the notes, looked at him and shed a tear then I realised I did a good job. At the time I also had a foot phobia and I had to perform bare feet so there was a lot happening. Everyone is watching me but I didn't care, as long as my daddy shared a tear I knew that I did a good job.

Fatiema Petersen, musician

She describes the abuse she suffered at the hands of her stepmother.

Part of what contributed to my selective mutism was the environment in my home and when I tried to communicate it in a story book or writing my mom letters, Najwa found it and tore it and made sure my father or mother did not find it because it revealed the truth,.

Fatiema Petersen, musician

I have eaten out of the bin, I have had an entire plate of food filled so that I don't talk to my father and focus on my food.... it was a lot.

Fatiema Petersen, musician

It is my truth, it is what it is and in order for me to move on, I need to accept that it existed. It was circumstantial and not within my control. The decisions that I make now, I am blessed enough to be in control and choose not to have that define me or have the negative power it had on me.

Fatiema Petersen, musician

Fatiema describes how she committed herself to her academics when her father died but eventually picked up a series of instruments.

I didn't sing after that because he had passed on and then my mom tried to keep us motivated and would help us sing here and there but it was never a commitment. For me, when my father passed I made a promise and said I will always try to make you proud so when it came to my academics I cut music because I needed to fulfill my promise.

Fatiema Petersen, musician

Then I started picking up instruments instead - drums, piano, a bit of trumpet...I was so interested in trying because it was new to me. For the instruments I have picked up, thank God, I haven't struggled.

Fatiema Petersen, musician

Fatiema speaks of the guilt she has battled with since her father's death.

I remember saying I am so sorry for not being there and felt so guilty for so long because I was not there. For years it has been my responsibility to be there for the people I love...

Fatiema Petersen, musician

He was an amazing father...even to his dying moment we were his priority.

Fatiema Petersen, musician

Click on the link below to hear her full story and live performance....


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